A court has struck down Pennsylvania's version of a "hate crimes" law, ruling that what officials there call an "Ethnic Intimidation Law" restriction was "unconstitutional and therefore null and void."
"Praise the Lord," said Michael Marcavage, chief of Repent America, a Christian organization. He was one of nearly a dozen people, who became known as the Philadelphia 11, arrested under the law and charged while ministering in 2004 at a publicly funded homosexual event called "OutFest."
Although the Christians who had been giving their testimony on public property later had their charges dismissed, they had been threatened with up to five decades in jail.
They then challenged the law itself, suing over its adoption, and the 4-1 decision in the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court said the amendments enacted in 2002 were unconstitutional. ...